Wigton to add 62% more wind power

Wigton Windfarm Limited’s (WWFL) plans to start expansion this year.

WWFL projects that it will generate additional energy of 63 gigawatt-hours (GWh) per year from an extra capacity of 24 megawatts (MW) by 2015.

Wigton Phase III is slated to start this year

That would increase its existing capacity of 38.7 MW by 62 per cent.

Last year, the wholly-owned subsidiary of Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica said studies indicate that energy from Wigton III can be translated into 72,141 barrels of oil being avoided (saved) annually, as well as 102,248 tonnes of carbon dioxide not being emmitted .

Under the new phase, WWFL intends to focus on developing potential sites at Great Valley by itself or by a third party.

Exploratory work on Wigton IV was also slated to be pursued and will focus on potential sites North or Wigton, according to last year’s estimates.

Electricity produced from wind energy is sold to the Jamaica Public Service under a power-purchase-agreement and is projected to generate revenues of $1.1 billion this fiscal year, or $7 miilion less than the last year.

WWFL also plans to add an additional revenue stream in the form of training to stakeholders. According to the estimates, “this arose from the need to develop more expert engineers locally in light of expansion of the renewable energy industry and the desire to create jobs.”

“The company aims to continue to observe efficiency in its operations and maintain a relatively steady profit margin,” said the estimates of revenue and expenses for 2013/2014. “As such as surplus of $163 million is being projected this year.”

The windfarm is mandated to provide and facilitate increased wind power and other renewable energy usage to generate electricity thereby diversifying Jamaica’s energy mix.

Though the renewable energy target for 2015 is 12.5 per cent, in accordance with the National Energy Policy as part of Vision 2030, WWFL said the government’s energy output will increase to 9.36 per cent during the year that ends next year March, up from seven per cent, according to the estimates of revenue and expenditure for the year ending March 2014.

By Shamille Scott Business reporter